Our beloved Curbside Classic Cohort has had a distinctly Latin American flavor lately, thanks largely to the photographic efforts of one Alberto Simon. Alberto appears to be based in Brazil, and there he has snapped two sets of twins in a pair of photographs I would happily frame and put on my wall.
The first of these two photos features a pair of Chevrolet Caravans, the wagon variant of the Brazilian Opala. Based on the 1966 Opel Rekord C, the Opala entered production in 1969 and was sold all the way up until 1992. During this time, the car received numerous facelifts and makeovers to remain fresh as can be seen in the photo above of a late model example. The Opala was available in sedan, wagon and coupe styles and the range used engines derived from the 250 cubic-inch Chevrolet straight six and the Chevy II’s 153 cubic-inch four-cylinder. Alberto’s caption says one of the Caravans is a 4.1/S from the ’80s, while the other is a 2.5 from the ’70s. These “alternate universe” GM products are fascinating and I highly recommend reading our contributor Rubens’ thorough history of the Opala.
Brasilia isn’t just a capital city filled with stunning modernist architecture. It’s also the name Volkswagen do Brasil applied to their Beetle-derived compact, sold from 1973 to 1982. Styling was very squared-off and resembled the 412, while the air-cooled, flat-four engine was borrowed from the Beetle. Robert Kim discussed the Brasilia all the way back in 2013.
To those Curbsiders in Latin America, keep writing and taking photographs!